Utah AG drops use of warrantless subpoenas

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Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes is dropping his office’s use of a law-enforcement tool that has raised privacy concerns.

Reyes announced Friday that he’s discontinuing the use of administrative subpoenas, which allow investigators to gather certain Internet or cellphone records without getting a warrant.

Reyes told The Salt Lake Tribune  that his investigators now will be required to get a judge’s order allowing them to obtain such information.

Reyes, who assumed office in December, says giving up the tool might make his investigators work a little harder, but he has been assured that it won’t hinder their ability to prosecute criminals.

His decision comes as Utah lawmakers are considering legislation that would require all law enforcement agencies in the state to submit subpoenas to the same judicial review.

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